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Nicotinic Agonists: Drugs that bind to and activate nicotinic cholinergic receptors (RECEPTORS, NICOTINIC). Nicotinic agonists act at postganglionic nicotinic receptors, at neuroeffector junctions in the peripheral nervous system, and at nicotinic receptors in the central nervous system. Agents that function as neuromuscular depolarizing blocking agents are included here because they activate nicotinic receptors, although they are used clinically to block nicotinic transmission.Dimethylphenylpiperazinium Iodide: A selective nicotinic cholinergic agonist used as a research tool. DMPP activates nicotinic receptors in autonomic ganglia but has little effect at the neuromuscular junction.Benzylidene Compounds: Compounds containing the PhCH= radical.Receptors, Nicotinic: One of the two major classes of cholinergic receptors. Nicotinic receptors were originally distinguished by their preference for NICOTINE over MUSCARINE. They are generally divided into muscle-type and neuronal-type (previously ganglionic) based on pharmacology, and subunit composition of the receptors.AzocinesNicotinic Antagonists: Drugs that bind to nicotinic cholinergic receptors (RECEPTORS, NICOTINIC) and block the actions of acetylcholine or cholinergic agonists. Nicotinic antagonists block synaptic transmission at autonomic ganglia, the skeletal neuromuscular junction, and at central nervous system nicotinic synapses.QuinolizinesNicotine: Nicotine is highly toxic alkaloid. It is the prototypical agonist at nicotinic cholinergic receptors where it dramatically stimulates neurons and ultimately blocks synaptic transmission. Nicotine is also important medically because of its presence in tobacco smoke.Mecamylamine: A nicotinic antagonist that is well absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract and crosses the blood-brain barrier. Mecamylamine has been used as a ganglionic blocker in treating hypertension, but, like most ganglionic blockers, is more often used now as a research tool.Bicyclo Compounds, Heterocyclic: A class of saturated compounds consisting of two rings only, having two or more atoms in common, containing at least one hetero atom, and that take the name of an open chain hydrocarbon containing the same total number of atoms. (From Riguady et al., Nomenclature of Organic Chemistry, 1979, p31)alpha7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor: A member of the NICOTINIC ACETYLCHOLINE RECEPTOR subfamily of the LIGAND-GATED ION CHANNEL family. It consists entirely of pentameric a7 subunits expressed in the CNS, autonomic nervous system, vascular system, lymphocytes and spleen.Dihydro-beta-Erythroidine: Dihydro analog of beta-erythroidine, which is isolated from the seeds and other plant parts of Erythrina sp. Leguminosae. It is an alkaloid with curarimimetic properties.Aconitine: A C19 norditerpenoid alkaloid (DITERPENES) from the root of ACONITUM plants. It activates VOLTAGE-GATED SODIUM CHANNELS. It has been used to induce ARRHYTHMIAS in experimental animals and it has antiinflammatory and antineuralgic properties.Tectum Mesencephali: The dorsal portion or roof of the midbrain which is composed of two pairs of bumps, the INFERIOR COLLICULI and the SUPERIOR COLLICULI. These four colliculi are also called the quadrigeminal bodies (TECTUM MESENCEPHALI). They are centers for visual sensorimotor integration.Pyridines: Compounds with a six membered aromatic ring containing NITROGEN. The saturated version is PIPERIDINES.Ganglionic Stimulants: Agents that mimic neural transmission by stimulation of the nicotinic receptors on postganglionic autonomic neurons. Drugs that indirectly augment ganglionic transmission by increasing the release or slowing the breakdown of acetylcholine or by non-nicotinic effects on postganglionic neurons are not included here nor are the nonspecific cholinergic agonists.Parasympathomimetics: Drugs that mimic the effects of parasympathetic nervous system activity. Included here are drugs that directly stimulate muscarinic receptors and drugs that potentiate cholinergic activity, usually by slowing the breakdown of acetylcholine (CHOLINESTERASE INHIBITORS). Drugs that stimulate both sympathetic and parasympathetic postganglionic neurons (GANGLIONIC STIMULANTS) are not included here.Bungarotoxins: Neurotoxic proteins from the venom of the banded or Formosan krait (Bungarus multicinctus, an elapid snake). alpha-Bungarotoxin blocks nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and has been used to isolate and study them; beta- and gamma-bungarotoxins act presynaptically causing acetylcholine release and depletion. Both alpha and beta forms have been characterized, the alpha being similar to the large, long or Type II neurotoxins from other elapid venoms.Acetylcholine: A neurotransmitter found at neuromuscular junctions, autonomic ganglia, parasympathetic effector junctions, a subset of sympathetic effector junctions, and at many sites in the central nervous system.Chlorisondamine: A nicotinic antagonist used primarily as a ganglionic blocker in animal research. It has been used as an antihypertensive agent but has been supplanted by more specific drugs in most clinical applications.Alkaloids: Organic nitrogenous bases. Many alkaloids of medical importance occur in the animal and vegetable kingdoms, and some have been synthesized. (Grant & Hackh's Chemical Dictionary, 5th ed)Cholinergic Agents: Any drug used for its actions on cholinergic systems. Included here are agonists and antagonists, drugs that affect the life cycle of ACETYLCHOLINE, and drugs that affect the survival of cholinergic neurons. The term cholinergic agents is sometimes still used in the narrower sense of MUSCARINIC AGONISTS, although most modern texts discourage that usage.Muscarinic Agonists: Drugs that bind to and activate muscarinic cholinergic receptors (RECEPTORS, MUSCARINIC). Muscarinic agonists are most commonly used when it is desirable to increase smooth muscle tone, especially in the GI tract, urinary bladder and the eye. They may also be used to reduce heart rate.Cholinergic Agonists: Drugs that bind to and activate cholinergic receptors.Carbachol: A slowly hydrolyzed CHOLINERGIC AGONIST that acts at both MUSCARINIC RECEPTORS and NICOTINIC RECEPTORS.AzetidinesMuscarine: A toxic alkaloid found in Amanita muscaria (fly fungus) and other fungi of the Inocybe species. It is the first parasympathomimetic substance ever studied and causes profound parasympathetic activation that may end in convulsions and death. The specific antidote is atropine.Hexamethonium: A nicotinic cholinergic antagonist often referred to as the prototypical ganglionic blocker. It is poorly absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract and does not cross the blood-brain barrier. It has been used for a variety of therapeutic purposes including hypertension but, like the other ganglionic blockers, it has been replaced by more specific drugs for most purposes, although it is widely used a research tool.Muscarinic Antagonists: Drugs that bind to but do not activate MUSCARINIC RECEPTORS, thereby blocking the actions of endogenous ACETYLCHOLINE or exogenous agonists. Muscarinic antagonists have widespread effects including actions on the iris and ciliary muscle of the eye, the heart and blood vessels, secretions of the respiratory tract, GI system, and salivary glands, GI motility, urinary bladder tone, and the central nervous system.Dose-Response Relationship, Drug: The relationship between the dose of an administered drug and the response of the organism to the drug.Ganglia, Sympathetic: Ganglia of the sympathetic nervous system including the paravertebral and the prevertebral ganglia. Among these are the sympathetic chain ganglia, the superior, middle, and inferior cervical ganglia, and the aorticorenal, celiac, and stellate ganglia.Dopamine Agonists: Drugs that bind to and activate dopamine receptors.Rats, Sprague-Dawley: A strain of albino rat used widely for experimental purposes because of its calmness and ease of handling. It was developed by the Sprague-Dawley Animal Company.Synaptosomes: Pinched-off nerve endings and their contents of vesicles and cytoplasm together with the attached subsynaptic area of the membrane of the post-synaptic cell. They are largely artificial structures produced by fractionation after selective centrifugation of nervous tissue homogenates.Receptors, Muscarinic: One of the two major classes of cholinergic receptors. Muscarinic receptors were originally defined by their preference for MUSCARINE over NICOTINE. There are several subtypes (usually M1, M2, M3....) that are characterized by their cellular actions, pharmacology, and molecular biology.Patch-Clamp Techniques: An electrophysiologic technique for studying cells, cell membranes, and occasionally isolated organelles. All patch-clamp methods rely on a very high-resistance seal between a micropipette and a membrane; the seal is usually attained by gentle suction. The four most common variants include on-cell patch, inside-out patch, outside-out patch, and whole-cell clamp. Patch-clamp methods are commonly used to voltage clamp, that is control the voltage across the membrane and measure current flow, but current-clamp methods, in which the current is controlled and the voltage is measured, are also used.Neurons: The basic cellular units of nervous tissue. Each neuron consists of a body, an axon, and dendrites. Their purpose is to receive, conduct, and transmit impulses in the NERVOUS SYSTEM.Electrophysiology: The study of the generation and behavior of electrical charges in living organisms particularly the nervous system and the effects of electricity on living organisms.gamma-Aminobutyric Acid: The most common inhibitory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system.GABA Agonists: Endogenous compounds and drugs that bind to and activate GAMMA-AMINOBUTYRIC ACID receptors (RECEPTORS, GABA).Calcium: A basic element found in nearly all organized tissues. It is a member of the alkaline earth family of metals with the atomic symbol Ca, atomic number 20, and atomic weight 40. Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body and combines with phosphorus to form calcium phosphate in the bones and teeth. It is essential for the normal functioning of nerves and muscles and plays a role in blood coagulation (as factor IV) and in many enzymatic processes.Membrane Potentials: The voltage differences across a membrane. For cellular membranes they are computed by subtracting the voltage measured outside the membrane from the voltage measured inside the membrane. They result from differences of inside versus outside concentration of potassium, sodium, chloride, and other ions across cells' or ORGANELLES membranes. For excitable cells, the resting membrane potentials range between -30 and -100 millivolts. Physical, chemical, or electrical stimuli can make a membrane potential more negative (hyperpolarization), or less negative (depolarization).Rats, Wistar: A strain of albino rat developed at the Wistar Institute that has spread widely at other institutions. This has markedly diluted the original strain.Purinergic P1 Receptor Agonists: Compounds that bind to and stimulate PURINERGIC P1 RECEPTORS.Brain: The part of CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM that is contained within the skull (CRANIUM). Arising from the NEURAL TUBE, the embryonic brain is comprised of three major parts including PROSENCEPHALON (the forebrain); MESENCEPHALON (the midbrain); and RHOMBENCEPHALON (the hindbrain). The developed brain consists of CEREBRUM; CEREBELLUM; and other structures in the BRAIN STEM.Cells, Cultured: Cells propagated in vitro in special media conducive to their growth. Cultured cells are used to study developmental, morphologic, metabolic, physiologic, and genetic processes, among others.Adrenergic Agonists: Drugs that bind to and activate adrenergic receptors.Adrenergic alpha-2 Receptor Agonists: Compounds that bind to and activate ADRENERGIC ALPHA-2 RECEPTORS.Serotonin 5-HT2 Receptor Agonists: Endogenous compounds and drugs that specifically stimulate SEROTONIN 5-HT2 RECEPTORS. Included under this heading are agonists for one or more of the specific 5-HT2 receptor subtypes.Serotonin 5-HT1 Receptor Agonists: Endogenous compounds and drugs that specifically stimulate SEROTONIN 5-HT1 RECEPTORS. Included under this heading are agonists for one or more of the specific 5-HT1 receptor subtypes.Histamine Agonists: Drugs that bind to and activate histamine receptors. Although they have been suggested for a variety of clinical applications histamine agonists have so far been more widely used in research than therapeutically.Purinergic P2 Receptor Agonists: Compounds that bind to and stimulate PURINERGIC P2 RECEPTORS.Adrenergic beta-Agonists: Drugs that selectively bind to and activate beta-adrenergic receptors.GABA-A Receptor Agonists: Endogenous compounds and drugs that bind to and activate GABA-A RECEPTORS.Adenosine A1 Receptor Agonists: Compounds that bind to and stimulate ADENOSINE A1 RECEPTORS.Adrenergic alpha-Agonists: Drugs that selectively bind to and activate alpha adrenergic receptors.Adrenergic alpha-1 Receptor Agonists: Compounds that bind to and activate ADRENERGIC ALPHA-1 RECEPTORS.Excitatory Amino Acid Agonists: Drugs that bind to and activate excitatory amino acid receptors.Cannabinoid Receptor Agonists: Compounds that interact with and stimulate the activity of CANNABINOID RECEPTORS.Adrenergic beta-3 Receptor Agonists: Compounds that bind to and activate ADRENERGIC BETA-3 RECEPTORS.Receptors, Opioid, mu: A class of opioid receptors recognized by its pharmacological profile. Mu opioid receptors bind, in decreasing order of affinity, endorphins, dynorphins, met-enkephalin, and leu-enkephalin. They have also been shown to be molecular receptors for morphine.Adenosine A3 Receptor Agonists: Drugs that selectively bind to and activate ADENOSINE A3 RECEPTORS.Receptors, Opioid, kappa: A class of opioid receptors recognized by its pharmacological profile. Kappa opioid receptors bind dynorphins with a higher affinity than endorphins which are themselves preferred to enkephalins.Radioligand Assay: Quantitative determination of receptor (binding) proteins in body fluids or tissue using radioactively labeled binding reagents (e.g., antibodies, intracellular receptors, plasma binders).GABA-B Receptor Agonists: Endogenous compounds and drugs that bind to and activate GABA-B RECEPTORS.Receptors, Opioid, delta: A class of opioid receptors recognized by its pharmacological profile. Delta opioid receptors bind endorphins and enkephalins with approximately equal affinity and have less affinity for dynorphins.Serotonin 5-HT4 Receptor Agonists: Endogenous compounds and drugs that specifically stimulate SEROTONIN 5-HT4 RECEPTORS.Ligands: A molecule that binds to another molecule, used especially to refer to a small molecule that binds specifically to a larger molecule, e.g., an antigen binding to an antibody, a hormone or neurotransmitter binding to a receptor, or a substrate or allosteric effector binding to an enzyme. Ligands are also molecules that donate or accept a pair of electrons to form a coordinate covalent bond with the central metal atom of a coordination complex. (From Dorland, 27th ed)Receptors, Dopamine D2: A subfamily of G-PROTEIN-COUPLED RECEPTORS that bind the neurotransmitter DOPAMINE and modulate its effects. D2-class receptor genes contain INTRONS, and the receptors inhibit ADENYLYL CYCLASES.Cyclic AMP: An adenine nucleotide containing one phosphate group which is esterified to both the 3'- and 5'-positions of the sugar moiety. It is a second messenger and a key intracellular regulator, functioning as a mediator of activity for a number of hormones, including epinephrine, glucagon, and ACTH.Enkephalin, Ala(2)-MePhe(4)-Gly(5)-: An enkephalin analog that selectively binds to the MU OPIOID RECEPTOR. It is used as a model for drug permeability experiments.Isoproterenol: Isopropyl analog of EPINEPHRINE; beta-sympathomimetic that acts on the heart, bronchi, skeletal muscle, alimentary tract, etc. It is used mainly as bronchodilator and heart stimulant.Purinergic Agonists: Compounds that bind to and activate PURINERGIC RECEPTORS.Adenosine: A nucleoside that is composed of ADENINE and D-RIBOSE. Adenosine or adenosine derivatives play many important biological roles in addition to being components of DNA and RNA. Adenosine itself is a neurotransmitter.Receptors, Opioid: Cell membrane proteins that bind opioids and trigger intracellular changes which influence the behavior of cells. The endogenous ligands for opioid receptors in mammals include three families of peptides, the enkephalins, endorphins, and dynorphins. The receptor classes include mu, delta, and kappa receptors. Sigma receptors bind several psychoactive substances, including certain opioids, but their endogenous ligands are not known.Adrenergic beta-1 Receptor Agonists: Compounds that bind to and activate ADRENERGIC BETA-1 RECEPTORS.Piperidines: A family of hexahydropyridines.Serotonin Antagonists: Drugs that bind to but do not activate serotonin receptors, thereby blocking the actions of serotonin or SEROTONIN RECEPTOR AGONISTS.